LIVE: FEVER 333 @ O2 Forum Kentish Town, London

By Adam Rosario

Every so often, a band comes along with the intention of changing the world through their music. Promoting change, critiquing current affairs and politics and trying to make a difference. These bands have a tangible uniqueness to them and for Fever 333, it doesn’t hurt that they are led by one of the best frontmen around. Jason Aalon Butler is no stranger to voicing his opinions, having done so in his previous bands and on guest vocals for other bands. Tonight at the Forum marks Fever 333’s biggest headline show of their career – a sold out, 2000 person capacity crowd who are all here for the ‘d333monstration’ and to see why this band are touted as the next big thing.

When the band announced this current November tour during a show at the Electric Ballroom back in June, they told the audience that their record label Roadrunner didn’t want to book a support band for this tour, to see whether the hype was real. To be able to sell out a venue the size of the Forum is astounding, especially with no other acts to open the night. Exploding on to the stage as a white sheet drops, ‘Made An America’ rumbles through the venue and sends the crowd wild. Pits open all over the standing area, with screams and cheers threatening to drown out the band. All three members use the stage as a playground, with Butler orchestrating the chaos in front of him. For a man who has mostly called club sized venues his home, he’s finally getting the chance to show his talent on a bigger stage, riding the beat of the song whilst spitting lyrics with precision. Guitarist Stephen Harrison whirls around the stage, slamming out riffs for fun whilst Aric Improta smashes his drum kit with reckless abandon.

‘Only One’ follows, cranking up the chaos even further, providing the band’s heaviest and most technical song of the set. This is a band with a punk rock ethos who have written big, memorable choruses that get stuck in the listeners’ heads with ease. ‘Out Of Control’ followed by the seismic ‘One Of Us’ give the crowd a taste of the diversity of this band. Combining punk with hip-hop whilst throwing in Butler’s vocal abilities really make this band something different. Before playing their cover of Green Day’s ‘Brain Stew’, Butler introduces Nova Twins as their special guests to perform it with. What follows is a very bassy cover, with Butler rapping the lyrics and twisting them to include excerpts of ‘California Love’ and 2019’s smash hit ‘Old Town Road’, showing off the creativity of the band, able to combine songs seamlessly, creating a whole new melody to make all the different songs fit together.

After the spine-tingling ‘Inglewood’, the energy ramps back up with ‘Walking In My Shoes’ with it’s rumbling bass line over the PA. The sharp instrumental blasts from Harrison and Improta sounding deafening as Butler screams the lyrics like it’s the last song of the set, not the midway point. The real highlight of the show comes  when Butler plays a version of ‘Am I Here?’ on a keyboard.  Showing a complete 180 degree turn from the punk rock rapping a few moments ago, his voice going from anger to sincerity and delicacy, capturing everyone in the venue’s attention, bringing the moshing to a pause, resulting in swaying and singing with pure emotion.

After this brief emotional break, the scintillating ‘Burn It’ brings the set to a close, before a roller-coaster encore of ‘We’re Coming In’, ‘The Innocent’ and ‘Hunting Season’ bring a triumphant night to a close. A band who formed just over two years ago have managed to sell out a 2000 capacity venue in a different country to their origin, promoted the show as just themselves and performed a show that justified the hype. Butler at one point in the set mentioned how this was an experiment for them, so that when they do tour and have support bands, they can pay those acts fairly and adequately. This is a band who are trying to make the world a better place. From charity donations to food drives, this is a band who want to bring change to the world. With the quality of musicianship in this band, Fever 333 will be playing bigger and bigger ‘d333monstrations’ in the future, and the music world will be put on alert – There’s a fever coming.